Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Yarn Along

This is my weekly-when-I-can post linking up with Ginny's famous Yarn Along.  I love sharing about knitting and reading.  It also serves as a reminder to do these things I love, and that's a plus!

This week I've really had a hard time backing off on the knitting so that my arms can rest a bit.  I should say it's been mentally difficult to hold back and see if rest will help.  It absolutely has.  I'm finally to the point where I'm not sore anymore, but moving along with projects has been painstakingly slow.  I want to be smart.  I want to listen to my body.

However, there were times when I told Knut that I just wanted to steal away 10 minutes to knit for my own sanity, and that's all I could handle that day.  Watching television after the kids are in bed is so strikingly boring when I can't knit.  So I've taken up more reading and that's not a bad thing.

Tuesday night, after 10 minutes a day knitting (ugh!) I finally finished knitting the shorties for a friend of a friend.  Now I just need to Kitchener stitch the crotch gusset, weave in the ends, and do a bit of hand embroidering on the bum.  None of that causes me trouble, so I should finish that by the end of today, and bring it to town tomorrow.

I've been staring at my sock weight yarn cardi and I want so badly to start tackling that.  I have so many limitations pressing down on me from my sore arms to Christmas baking right now that I'm not sure if I'll make my mark to finish it by Christmas which really bothers me.

Since I've turned off the telly and started reading more after the kids are in bed, I've been working my way through 2 books.  All Wound Up is quick and fun.  I was reading some essays from this book Monday night and had to stop several times to wipe away tears and catch my breath from laughing so hard.  Her obituary of a knitting project gone wrong nearly did me in.  Granted, I was reading it late at night and pretty much everything is hilarious late at night, as multiple youth group lock-ins prove all across the country.  At any rate, I definitely plan on reading more from the Yarn Harlot in the future.

The other book, Dumbing Us Down, has been on my reading list for well over a year.  Had I known it was only about 100 pages I might have picked it up earlier.  My first reaction is it's very harsh to the modern school system.  I wish he would cite more.  He would probably say that his big, thick book on The Underground History of American Education as well as his 30 years as a teacher qualifies him "expert" enough to say what he wants to say.

One theme throughout the book is that we are trained in school to listen only to experts and not our own brains.  So it makes sense that this book is from his life, his experience, his knowledge, and not what a lot of "experts" say.  It's a book of essay, not research paper-theory style.  It's his opinion and a very thought provoking one.

As I'm going through chapter 3, the message of the book starts to gently sink in and so many of my fears and insecurities as a homeschooling mom started turning into confidence and inspiration. However, it's not written to homeschoolers.  It's written to anyone interested in education: parents, teachers, administrators, employers, everyday citizens. 

He's obviously not coming from a Christian prospective, but he is coming from a very pro-family prospective and I really like that. I absolutely agree with him on the importance of inter-generational learning.  The young and the elderly must spend quality time together and not be secluded in their little cells, only seeing people their own age as our society likes to place those 2 age groups specifically.  I like his stress on community service being mandatory.

This little book is already having a profound effect on my thoughts on education, and it will certainly be read through again as I feel like I'm not absorbing everything this first read through.  Knut is already chomping at the bit to read it as well, so I may have to pause before reading again to let him catch up and read it himself.  I heard wind that the moms at my homeschool group might be discussing Gatto's works at an upcoming "Mom's Night Out" and I think that would make for a very interesting discussion.

13 comments:

Crunchy Momma said...

Oh what to say? I know what its like to have limitations to the things we want to do and not have to. Rest Momma, your arms are asking for it and enjoy the holiday season. That is what you will look back on and remember although a project makes a pretty good memory too lol. That book sounds like a great read. It is hard to not feel like our kids will have gaps from being homeschooled but then I see the results and they speak for themselves. Thanks for sharing.

Lee Ann said...

Oh...it is so hard to rest when you should...and there are so many projects waiting in the wings.... I completely understand.

Wishing you a restful week :)

stitchandpurl said...

It is hard not to work on projects, especially at this time of year - but it sounds like it is definitely the smart thing to rest and practise letting go - a lesson I get to learn often enough as well. Hope you're feeling much better soon.

Kathy said...

It can be so hard to slow down and take tome off when the body needs rest. I hope you're able to get back to the projects you enjoy soon, but so glad that you're taking the time you need to heal.

Best wishes in your homeschooling!

Ellen said...

I'm sorry that your arm is keeping you from knitting and other Christmas prep. Hope that it improves soon. So having great patience for letting it rest is a must. Otherwise, your malady may last longer. I've heard about that Gatto book but have never read it. Will put it on my to-read list.

Erin said...

Oh, be careful with those sore arms! RSI is pretty miserable. I hope you are able to find a different position for knitting that will eliminate your soreness.

Anke said...

I love the yarn harlot series! They are all wonderfully written, witty and oh so true. ;-) Sorry about your arms, make sure you don't overdo anything.

Stacy said...

Sorry you're having to take it slow. 10 minutes a day would be a hard restriction to have...hope healing happens quickly so you can get back to your regular-knitting self.

Kaylana said...

I really enjoyed Gatto's book. Having been a teacher and now a homeschooling mom, I can appreciate his message. Living in a former Soviet country, I've seen evidence of how the system works to dumb down the population. It will leave you thinking about a lot of things.
Enjoy!

Proud Mama said...

Oh, please rest. It sounds like your body is really guiding you. I love the Yarn Harlot. I read her blog and often laugh out loud. My husband has heard many of her stories as well. Gatto has spoken at our hsing convention in the past. Generally I agree with his words, and am so happy we choose a different path.

Lisa said...

Your knitting looks really nice. As for the Gatto book - I've only heard of him recently, but from two different places. He sounds very sensible!

little macaroon. said...

right, that's it! I need belly laughs just now, and so I am putting Yarn Harlot on my personal Christmas list (as in, I'll use any excuse to get a copy for myself!) x

Lori ann said...

i really would like that book too! i hope your resting is helping you to quickly heal.
x